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Sci-Fi Odyssey: A Tour Through the Great Works of Speculative Fiction – Ursula K. LeGuin

January 15, 2023 at 1:00 pm - 4:00 pm EST

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Come join David White for the next installment of a salon series dedicated to exploring the themes, ideas, and world-building of science fiction.

We will be venturing into the world of The Left Hand of Darkness and exploring what it means to be human in a world without fixed gender. We will discuss what it truly means to have an alien culture, the implicit nature of gender in society, and how first contact should work with other civilizations.

The Left Hand of Darkness is a monumental novel focused on the difficulty of communication with truly alien species. The isolated winter world of Gethen serves as a backdrop for a complicated tale focused on how culture shapes us, the things we take for granted and the challenges of cooperation.

The very best science fiction shows us what it means to be human in the face of strange situations, and this novel stands out as exemplary in that regard. Gethen’s alien inhabitants serve as an ideal means to reflect on human nature and culture. We will also explore the religious themes of the Gethenians (including the ritual of Foretelling), and discuss how anthropological lenses are useful when interrogating science fiction.

Suggested Reading/Watching:

  • The Left Hand of Darkness – Ursula K. LeGuin


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January 15, 2023
1:00 pm - 4:00 pm EST
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David White


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